The Chestnut Chair

Contributed by NPS, Longfellow House-Washington's Headquarters National Historic Site


This chair, also called "The Children's Chair," was designed by Longfellow's nephew, William Pitt Preble Longfellow and made from the wood of "The Spreading Chestnut Tree" referred to by Longfellow in his poem "The Village Blacksmith." When Brattle Street was widened the tree that stood in front of the home and shop of Dexter Pratt, the local smith, was cut down. The children of Cambridge paid to have this chair made from its wood, and presented it to Longfellow on his 72nd birthday along with a special book containing each of their names. As an expression of gratitude, Longfellow composed the poem "From My Armchair."

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About This Item

  • Title: The Chestnut Chair
  • Creator: Hartwell, H. Edgar
  • Creation Date: circa 1876
  • Subject Date: circa 1876
  • Town: Cambridge
  • County: Middlesex
  • State: MA
  • Media: wood
  • Dimensions: 604 cm x 692 cm x 589 cm
  • Local Code: LONG 4469
  • Object Type: Physical Object

For more information about this item, contact:

NPS, Longfellow House-Washington's Headquarters National Historic Site
105 Brattle Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 876-4491

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